BUILDING THE NEXT BIG THING
Breakthrough Lab (B-Lab) is Brown University’s premier 8-week summer (June and July) accelerator program for Brown and RISD students developing high-impact ventures. In many ways, B-Lab is a natural extension of Brown’s creative, problem-solving DNA. Our goals are two-fold: to educate world-class entrepreneurs, and to foster the development of new ventures that are creating high-impact and scalable solutions to serious problems. We take a supportive and rigorous approach to venture creation and see B-Lab as a springboard for ventures to go on to larger, national accelerator programs or directly to attracting outside capital. Learn more about the program and its impact on students in this short video below.
WHAT B-LAB PROVIDES
— Custom and sector-specific mentoring and workshops,
— Peer cohort of dedicated founders,
— Co-working space at the Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship, and
— Award of $4,000 (for currently enrolled Brown or RISD undergraduate and graduate students).
This is an opportunity to work full-time on building your venture and meaningfully contribute to the entrepreneurial community on College Hill and beyond. If you have any questions, please email us at email@example.com.
B-LAB INFO SESSIONS
We hold info sessions each fall semester in early November and again in early December. Sign up for our newsletter here to learn and keep a look out for announcements on Today@Brown.
We are looking for founders that can clearly articulate the problem they aim to solve and have a general, (and hopefully tested) understanding of how they are going to solve it. We put together a resource guide to help you through the process, including what we are looking for when it comes to making your 2-minute B-Lab video and 3-minute BVP video.
APPLICATION PROCESS AND TIMELINE
Application Opens / Sign-up for an Application Mentor
We recommend that all prospective applicants request an application by the end of the Fall Semester.
If you apply for an application mentor after the end of the fall semester, we will try but cannot guarantee a mentor match.
Don’t wait until the last minute! Late applications will not be considered. After the deadline, staff immediately assigns your application to a committee reader.
Finalist ventures notified
The B-Lab Selection Committee reviews applications and notifies finalist ventures to let them know if they have made it on to the next round.
Finalists interview with the selection committee.
The final cohort determined and notified
B-Lab ventures receive an email from the selection committee regarding their acceptance into the program!
Deadline to accept the offer
Finalists must notify the B-Lab staff whether or not they will join the B-Lab cohort.
“I think the biggest takeaway from B-Lab was really the mentorship network that it provided. The advisors we have met in the mentorship network have guided our way to making progress, both in terms of product and in terms of marketing and business development.”
After B-Lab, Rocky learned to “not be afraid to think big and go after what you actually want (rather than what feels safe or expected).”
B-Lab brings together critical resources throughout its 8-week program, designed to help founders strengthen, develop, and advance their ventures. Best of all, the program is tailored to the unique needs of each team. Participants will have access to a roster of experienced mentors, funding, and dedicated space. The goal? To help them build the next great thing.
B-Lab ventures have access to a dedicated workspace at 1 Euclid Avenue (on Thayer St), designed to maximize their progress.
Each B-Lab participant receives a $4000 scholarly award to enable their summer venture work. We will provide a Summer Earnings Waiver (SEW) to Brown students who need to meet the Standard Contribution (SC) from the Summer Earnings Expectation.
A NETWORK OF SUPPORT
A deep and knowledgeable roster of mentors, industry contacts, and experienced entrepreneurs.
B-Lab is proud to partner with Amazon to help teams get critical resources and support. Amazon Web Services provides startups with the low cost, easy to use infrastructure needed to scale and grow. The AWS Activate program provides startups with the resources they need to quickly get started on AWS – including credits, training, and support.
“I learned that 1) a great mentor can make a huge difference in how much progress a team can make, and 2) the power of a great pitch.”
B-Lab seeks to attract student
A concept for a high-impact venture and a thorough understanding of the problem they aim to solve.
A proposed solution that addresses that problem.
A plan for measurable objectives that the team plans to reach while in B-Lab.
An eagerness to contribute and be part of an entrepreneurial community.
Mentor a B-Lab Applicant
We are looking for mentors of all backgrounds to help student entrepreneurs with their Breakthrough Lab (B-Lab) and/or Brown Venture Prize (BVP) applications. The time commitment is an estimated 1 hour every one or two weeks until the application deadline. Interested? send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: “I Would Like to Be a B-Lab Mentor.” Complete this form at any time to express your interest. Visit our mentoring resource page for tips on fostering an empowering mentorship.
“The most valuable takeaways from this experience is learning the power of storytelling as a founder and how important support systems are in generating energy and sound boarding partners for the long-haul.”